Skip to main content
7:00 am
good morning. breaking news. japanese military helicopters dropped water on that damaged nuclear plant in a desperate attempt to avoid a meltdown. now the obama administration is telling americans who are in japan it is time to consider getting out today, thursday, march 17th, 2011. >> from nbc news, this is a special edition of "today," disaster in japan with matt lauer and meredith vieira. live from studio 1a in
7:01 am
rockefeller plaza. >> good morning. welcome to "today" on a thursday morning. i'm matt lauer. >> i'm savannah guthrie in for meredith who is on assignment. a sign of how desperate things are in japan that they are willing to try such a long shot. helicopters dropping water from the air. >> want to take a look at the video right now. as you can see when they do that a significant amount of that water seems to be dispersed by the wind. now massive high pressure water cannons, the kind you have seen police use on rioters will be used to hoes dose down the reac from the ground. more on this desperate attempt just ahead. growing disagreement today between officials in japan and here in the u.s. over the severity of the situation. the chair of the u.s. regulatory commission believes a storage pool holding highly radioactive spent fuel rods may be completely empty at this point and that at times radiation levels have been so high they would be lethal in a very short
7:02 am
period of time. he urged americans to stay at least 50 miles away from the plant but that's four times the distance of the evacuation order from japanese officials. people in japan are growing really frustrated at this point about the lack of clear, prompt information. we'll talk about that as well as the state department's decision to begin offering voluntary evacuation to family members of personnel in japan. >> we have a lot to get to. let us start this morning with ann curry who is in northern japan. ann, good morning to you. >> reporter: good morning to you, matt. as you report the situation is still very serious. the japanese government is saying the radiation levels are stable. the u.s. has its own experts on the ground and has a very different assessment of the risk. meantime, there were more extraordinary measures taken today to get those reactors under control. japanese helicopters stage water drops over the crippled
7:03 am
fukushima daiichi plant earlier where the situation is far from under control. reactor two compromised and leaking radiation. reactor three critical. spent nuclear fuel rods sitting in almost no water and at risk of melting. >> helicopters have been collecting sea water. >> reporter: helicopter flyover an effort to cool the water by replenishing water where the rods are stored. and attack from the ground sending in 11 water cannon trucks. reactor four, also a big concern. damaged by multiple fires with japanese say spent nuclear fuel rods sit in low levels of water with radiation escaping but at levels that don't pose a risk to the area outside of the evacuation zone. >> the priority is on recovering water levels. >> reporter: wednesday in washington a far more dire assessment. >> we believe that secondary
7:04 am
containment has been destroyed. there is no water in the spent fuel pool. we believe that radiation levels are extremely high. >> reporter: radiation levels are so high that japanese evacuation orders should be expected. >> we recommend an evacuation to a much larger radius. >> reporter: 220 miles southeast of us two governments disagree on how wide the evacuation zone should be at the fukushima plant. the japanese government has maintained for days that residents within 12 miles should evacuate. those within 19 miles should remain indoors. wednesday the american government said u.s. citizens within 50 miles of the plant should leave the area. >> the u.s. government has taken a more conservative approach. >> reporter: at a news conference today, japanese officials stayed on message assuring their people that the evacuation perimeters set by
7:05 am
japan are sound. >> our sense is to protect the lives of our nationals. >> reporter: despite the government's best effort to maintain calm, there's clear concern as countless residents in the danger zone were scanned for radiation. in tokyo the streets empty. the airport packed with people trying to get out. the nuclear situation is very worrying, this man says. i don't want my children to be contaminated by nuclear fallout. the u.s. state department is urging u.s. citizens not to travel to japan at this time. saying those in japan "should consider departing." meanwhile, survivors in the devastation are just trying to hold on as they slowly make it to evacuees. main concern is staying warm as temperature drops and snow falls. the death toll getting higher each day with thousands still missing. there's also a major effort
7:06 am
under way at the nuclear power plant to get the generators back up and running so the cooling system can be working again which is very important to cooling down those reactors. also the u.s. has now authorized a voluntary departure of embassy and consulate personnel and their family members and the u.s. government is planning charter aircraft to assist other americans who need help leaving japan. now back to you, matt. >> before i let you go on the subject of departure, you are in okita which is 220 miles to the north and west of fukushima plant. wind hopefully going in the right direction. you are upwind from that plant. what are your plans for sticking roar or getting out of there? >> we're going to hold down the fort for as long as possible. we're aware if there's a major disaster, it won't be about the surface winds but about the winds in upper levels and we understand that we would be at risk so we are making a ton of
7:07 am
contingency plans to make sure that our team is safe. >> all right. as always, ann, thank you very much. it's six minutes after the hour. nbc's chief science correspondent robert bezel is in tokyo this morning. i know there was a news conference this morning from japanese officials. these japanese officials said there was disagreement even among themselves as to whether or not that storage pool with those expired fuel rods was empty it my question to you is if the japanese officials can't even agree amongst themselves, what does that tell us about their credibility and the handle they have on this situation? >> reporter: good morning, savannah. i just came from that news conference. there's almost no credibility left. as we hear this is an ominous situation. there are six reactors. 170 miles north of here. at least four of them are way out of control and could release a lot of radiation at any time. the wind is now blowing in this direction toward an area where
7:08 am
30 million people live. it's very serious. i'm not saying there will be a release of radiation but it certainly could happen. >> what are people in japan telling you? how do they feel about their government, this lack of information and maybe even worse a lack of candor from the government? >> reporter: a lot of people are getting frustrated and upset. not just japanese citizens. a lot of nuclear experts. i've been covering this story all week and i've talked to experts in japan and europe and the united states. at first a lot of them were very reassuring about this situation but now they say they feel like they've been betrayed. they think the company that owns the plants probably was doing something wrong and that's why it's so difficult to bring it under control now. it wasn't just the tsunami. it wasn't just the earthquake. those are horrible but there are difficulties caused by the company was making some shortcuts before. >> robert, if i understand it, japanese officials still say
7:09 am
there's no need to leave tokyo. at this point are people still listening to that advice from the tokyo or are you starting to see a mad scramble from the city? >> reporter: well, there's a lot of people who are leaving if they can. japanese people. of course, many of them don't have a place to go or the means to leave. a lot of foreigners as ann pointed out in her piece are leaving. it's quiet for different reasons. there's almost no gasoline. roving power blackouts and trains aren't rolling so people can't make it to work and businesses are closed. it's a very quiet time here in tokyo. >> bob bazell in tokyo for us this morning. thank you. 7:09. here's matt. the unpredictable weather and wind conditions in japan could add to the problems caused by those failing reactors. al is upstairs with more on that. >> good morning, matt. unfortunately the surface winds are going to be a factor as we get into this situation and if there is a radiation release
7:10 am
anymore than we've got. winds are currently coming blowing offshore. that's good news. temperatures 26 in sendai. windchills at 15. 37 in tokyo. as we move into tomorrow, friday for tokyo, here's the problem. we'll see local sea breezes setting in so that's going to mean the winds are going to be blowing onshore. that's a big problem. temperatures will get up into the mid 50s helping folks. mid 40s in sendai. as we move on into saturday, you're going to see again the winds will be blowing across the land and so as high pressure builds in those winds are going to become lighter and more variable so we won't get winds blowing out into the ocean. if there is radiation, they won't get help from those winds blowing offshore. we'll continue to watch this. we're not going to see any big change coming until the beginning of next week, savannah, when we get a big storm moving in and that will blow things back out into the ocean. in the meantime, for the next 48
7:11 am
hours, a land breeze is going to be really the big situation there. >> all right, al. thank you. as we mentioned earlier, the u.s. government is urging americans to stay at least 50 miles away from the fukushima plant. and the state department has now announced it will begin offering voluntary evacuation to family members of u.s. personnel in japan. chuck todd is nbc's chief white house correspondent. good morning. >> reporter: that will affect 600 families and chartered flights will allow private american citizens to get on if they can. all of this has to do with the fact that yesterday was a big turn in that the obama administration and the american government clearly isn't trusting what's coming out of the japanese government and is now taking upon itself to warn american citizens what to do in japan. the u.s. government has been very sensitive to the fact that thousands of americans live and work in japan and they're scared. secretary of state hillary
7:12 am
clinton told nbc's andrea mitchell the u.s. government is following the developments minute by minute. >> we're doing everything we can to assist american citizens because their health and safety is obviously our highest concern. >> reporter: on wednesday concern over the troubled nuclear plant led the u.s. government to issue its own recommendations for u.s. citizens in japan. a break with japanese counterparts on how safe the area near the fukushima plant is. the japanese have said people only need to evacuate if they're 12 miles from the plant. those 19 miles away have been told to stay inside. but on wednesday they said americans should stay 50 miles away from the endangered nuclear plant. four times farther than the japanese evacuation order. >> we determined in the united states we would issue an evacuation out to 50 miles. >> reporter: the nrc chairman made the decision after talking to technical experts in tokyo. >> they provided us with information that indicated that
7:13 am
there was a significantly degraded condition in spent rod fuels. could you have a significant release of radiation from that spent fuel pool. . >> reporter: at the house the press secretary disputed the notion they didn't trust information coming from american officials. >> it's standards set here in the united states and the kind of advice it would be giving should this incident happen in the united states or something similar to it. not about the quality of information or the level of cooperation. it's about our analysis and our standard. >> reporter: the fear of radiation exposure has already driven some americans in japan to leave. >> both my wife and i were in a panic. we said we have to get the hell out of here. >> reporter: in this country people worried about the possibility of radiation making its way to the west coast have been buying up thousands of doses of potasium iodine. the surgeon general told a california tv station that having the pills might be a
7:14 am
worthy precaution. >> it's definitely appropriate. we have to be prepared. >> reporter: but nbc's nancy snyderman says it's unnecessary. >> the surgeon general said i never intended to imply that people go out and buy pills. >> reporter: the danger in japan is very real and experts believe the nrc is right to go beyond japanese guidelines. >> you can't be too cautious at this point. if the situation develops, then the risk could extend at least 50 miles and possibly even further. >> reporter: because japan is such a close ally to the united states, there's a lot of sensitivities here. president obama called prime minister kan in advance to let him know the new advisories are going out hoping that would smith things over a little bit. matt? >> chuck todd, thank you very much. james is a nuclear expert with the carnegie endowment for international peace. good to see you again. good morning. >> good morning, matt. >> let's start with what seems to be the most serious of several serious situations at
7:15 am
the fukushima plant in the building housing reactor number four. according to reports the pool that is holding the spent fuel rods, the water in it is gone and these rods are now either completely exposed or almost completely exposed thus bleeding radiation. is this the worst case scenario? >> no, matt, this isn't. this is extremely serious. it's certainly not the worst case scenario. the water that filled those swimming pool like structures serves two purposes. it both is a shield of radiation and it keeps those rods cool. now, in the immediate term perhaps the biggest danger comes from the lack of shielding because these highly radioactive fuel rods will radiate the area around it making it harder for workers. the expert community is divided upon whether if you lose water those fuel rods can start burning. our lack of knowledge about what might happen in this situation
7:16 am
is also a source of significant concern. >> why wouldn't people know if those rods are exposed whether they can start burning? shouldn't that be scientific fact? >> it ought to be but one of the things we're learning about this crisis is when you are so far out of the playbook and when you have so little experience of an accident of this scale and conditions this extreme, then actually there's significant uncertainty skientivically about what may happen. >> we've seen helicopters dropping loads of water. i guess the idea is that through fractures in the roof they hope some of that water gets down into that pool that's holding these spent fuel rods from a complete novice point of view it seems like an extreme long shot. what's your opinion of it? >> my understanding is that the helicopters have been bombarding unit three rather than the spent
7:17 am
fuel pond in unit four. so it is an attempt to try to keep the reactor cool. i think the operators will probably acknowledge this is a long shot. as i've said before, we're a long way out of the playbook here and it's necessary to improvise. >> going back to unit four in this pool with the spent fuel rods, if in fact the water is gone from that pool, do we assume that it's gone because it leaked after the earthquake or explosions or because the heat of those rods has forced it to evaporate? >> well, some of the analysis that i've read and i haven't had a chance to do any calculations myself to try to confirm this has suggested that the evaporation rate would be relatively slow. >> then that pool is damaged? >> very hard to say but that would be the tentative conclusion at this point. >> i want to ask you about something. everywhere i go and we talk about this story i get the same comments and that is about these
7:18 am
50 workers. you've got 50 or so people who are trying to stand between what is already a serious situation and a desperate situation. we've heard reports of extremely high levels of radiation at that plant right now. and headlines have blared this. is this likely they have already been exposed to levels of radiation where their survival is doubtful? >> i haven't seen the latest data for the levels of radiation on site. when that radiation was at its highest, a number of hours of exposure four hours or ten hours and you would start to feel the onset of radiation sickness. now, the levels have been fluctuating. i'm talking about when levels were at the highest and brave workers on site are not just out in the open most of the time. they are in shielded structures. we don't know how much they've been exposed. what is clear is those brave men
7:19 am
and women know they are at great personal risk to themselves in this situation. >> finally, james, 104 nuclear reactors in this country. some in areas that are at risk for earthquake. others near high population centers in this country. do we need to in the wake of what's happening in japan reexamine the procedures at these plants or the designs of these plants? >> i think the key thing we need to examine is the following. the reason why we had this accident in japan is because it was hit by a bigger earthquake and particularly tsunami that it was designed to withstand. i think what we need is a review to ask whether all plants across the world are capable of withstanding the full range of accidents, both natural and man-made, to which they might be subject. >> james akton, thank you so much for your time this morning. >> thank you, matt. >> amazing how much we still don't know. even the scientists can't agree
7:20 am
on so many of what seems to be the core issues here. >> everyone thinking about the workers and what they must be going through. i think about what their family members must be going through knowing they are so close to such danger. >> let us get a look at the other news stories this morning. >> japan's nuclear crisis has affected the world markets. we want to go to cnbc's erin burnett at the new york stock exchange. >> the tokyo market down under 1.5%. i've never seen anything like this. we always think markets have full information and so they trade sort of ahead of what the rest of us know. in this situation you get a headline out of an eu nuclear minister and you get the market plunging. it's a roller coaster. it's not so much because of the economic impact, it's because of the uncertainty and because the word radiation and meltdown
7:21 am
sparks a lot of fear. we'll get a bit of a pop today. it's really a headline driven market. back to you. >> erin burnett at the new york stock exchange watching the markets closely. bahrain is on lockdown after security forces unleashed a wave of demonstrators in the capital on wednesday. they attacked doctors and patients alike in a hospital. in pearl square, demonstrators were sprayed with tear gas and rubber bullets. at least six people were reported dead in the clashes. the united nations security council votes on a resolution to impose a no-fly zone over libya in a move to stop moammar gadhafi's assault on opposition forces. the u.s. is pushing the u.n. to authorize the use of air strikes in that country. meantime, four journalists from "the new york times" are reported missing in libya. they were last seen and heard from on tuesday. u.s. government is denying reports that it paid so-called blood money for the release of
7:22 am
cia contractor raymond davis who was detained in pakistan for killing two men allegedly in self-defense. protests broke out in cities across pakistan as news of davis' release spread yesterday. the affair has chilled relations with pakistan as the u.s. insist
7:23 am
>> we are going to see plenty of sunshine today. absolutely beautiful. temperatures in the mid-60's. as far as tomorrow, better still. upper 30s over the weeken >> that's your latest weather.
7:24 am
>> all right, al. just ahead, how japan's royal family is dealing with the crisis in their country. first, this is "today" on nbc.
7:25 am
7:26 am
that's the site of the upcoming royal wedding. look who is there this morning. >> live, local, latebreaking. this is wbal-tv 11 news today in baltimore. >> good morning. i am stan stovall. here is sarah caldwell and traffic pulse 11. >> problems of the harbor tunnel. all lanes closed due to a disabled vehicle. watch for delays on northbound 895.
7:27 am
another one at marriottsville road and henryton road. on the west side, that is where the biggest delay is right now. 18 minutes to get through the outer lips stretched. not to bet on the north side. let's give you a live view of traffic and we will show you what it looks like on the west side. still some volume towards edmondson. live view of traffic in the area of 895. it may take awhile. watch for closures along o'donnell due to the st. patrick's day parade. sandra, over to you. >> nice temperatures right now out there. 40 at the airport. 44 in annapolis. we're heading for a high in the mid-60's with plenty of sunshine. light winds at 5-10 miles per hour. temperatures rise even further above normal as we head into
7:28 am
tomorrow. temperatures in the mid-70's to wrap up the work week. spring officially begins on sunday. saturday and sunday, increasing cloudiness and maybe a chance of a shower on saturday. >> check the bottom of your screen for updated news and traffic information brought back at 7:55 with another live update.
7:29 am
7:30 am
7:30 on a thursday morning. it's march 17th, 2011. it's st. patrick's day. we have a lot of green outside getting ready for a big parade down fifth avenue in just a couple of hours here in new york city. inside studio 1a i'm matt lauer alongside savannah guthrie who is in while meredith is on assignment. just ahead this half hour, the chilling diary kept by the mastermind of a brutal home invasion in connecticut. details as he plans to stand trial. what would you do if you
7:31 am
caught your boyfriend cheating? four women discovered they were dating the same man who conned them out of thousands of dollars. so they got together, confronted him and recorded it all. we'll talk to those women live in our studio coming up exclusively. also ahead, we'll check in with meredith vieira who made her way to london doing preparation for the royal wedding. when i say preparation, what exactly does that mean? >> reporter: well, that means i'm picking up royal wedding come emirative shot glasses. it's cold here this morning. i was in the abbey talking about last-minute preparations. we'll tell you about that and also to new zealand where prince william is visiting the quake site as we speak. back to you, matt. >> we'll check in with you in just a couple minutes. thanks very much. we want to start this half hour
7:32 am
with the royal family in japan and how they are dealing with the ongoing crisis in their country. natalie has their story. natalie? >> reporter: emperor akihito rarely makes speeches but the 77 year old took to the airwaves on wednesday and delivered a message of solidarity and determination to his people. to a nation under siege, the appearance of the 77 emperor is inspirational and another indication of how critical the situation has become. akihito urged the country to stay calm and pull together in the difficult days that lie ahead. >> translator: i'm deeply concerned about the nuclear situation and hope it will be resolved, he said. i hope things will take a turn for the better. >> the presence of the emperor on television i think is very much an indication of how important it is to express within japan the unity of the
7:33 am
japanese people. >> reporter: japan's imperial family is the oldest in the world going back 1,400 years. for most of that time emperors were considered virtual gods. that changed after world war ii when akihito's father conceded. he's made an effort to change with the times including marrying a commoner. >> humanize the entire royal family and trying to find a place or niche so to say in japanese society where they can play a huge role. >> reporter: in 1995 the royal couple visited victims of the earthquake which killed some 6,400 people. usually the japanese imperial family stays out of public view living in quiet luxury inside their palace.
7:34 am
but beneath these tranquil images is a tension about the line of succession. they have been unable to produce a male heir to the thrown ne setting up a potential showdown. male or female, whoever ends up on the legendary throne will have the same possibility as the current monarch. a living symbol of japan who can be called upon in moments of crisis just like today to unify a grieving nation. >> i think that the royal family particularly the emperor will certainly make condolence visits especially to the tsunami site which is very visible. whether or not we'll ever see the emperor appearing at the nuclear reactor site is far more doubtful. >> the experts we spoke to say that the emperor is treated with
7:35 am
a great deal of respect in japan in part because he's not often in public view and doesn't get involved in politics at all. matt? >> thank you very much for that. let us now get a check of the weather from al. >> announcer: today's weather is brought to you by chico's. it's who you are. >> we have got a huge st. patrick's day crowd today. the weather will be perfect for the 250th st. patrick's day parade in new york city. unbelievable. oldest st. patrick's day parade anywhere. unbelievable. they are all going to wear the green today. let's check your weather and see what's happening. we'll show you for st. patrick's day. dublin, california, 58. dublin, ohio, sunshine, 66. clover, south carolina, 76.
7:36 am
shamro shamrock, new york, 58 degrees. that's what's going on around the >> we are in store for plan of sunshine for a st. patrick's day. light winds, well above normal. same deal in ocean city. plenty of >> that's your latestest weather. >> new developments in a deadly home invasion case in connecticut. a mother and her two children were brutalized and killed. one man has already been convicted and sentenced to death and now his alleged accomplice is going on trial. nbc's jeff rossen is at the courthouse in new haven.
7:37 am
jeff, good morning. >> reporter: hi, savannah. good morning to you. how much can one man possibly take? dr. william petit has been in court every day. sat through an entire trial already listening in detail about how his family was sexually assault and killed inside their own home. brutalized in front of him for many hours overnight. here we go all over again. prosecutors won't just be standing in court explaining what happened. turns out the new man on trial kept a diary, a very graphic diary of the crime. for the lone survivor, the vigilant guardian of his family's memory, dr. william petit returned to court on wednesday face to face with joshua komisarjevsky, the alleged mastermind behind the horrific killing of petit's wife jennifer and young daughters hayley and mik chaela.
7:38 am
not a single juror chosen. their minds made up. >> he's a murderer. >> i have my definite opinion. i think he's guilty. >> reporter: prosecutors say komisarjevsky and steven hayes already on death row for this broke into the family home, tied dr. petit to this pole in the basement and beat him with a baseball bat. then tied his two girls to their bed posts upstairs. forcing his wife to withdraw ransom money at a local bank before burning the house down. sexually assaulting and killing the family inside. dr. petit escaped and ran for help but it was too late. prosecutors say komisarjevsky kept a chilling diary of his role in the murders writing "years of pent up aggression built up in prison was waiting to be released like a ticking time bomb." recalling the result of petit's daughter, michaela. >> i tasted her fear after
7:39 am
stripping her of her clothing to take blackmail pictures. chris is the former prosecutor. >> the journal entries are distu disturbing. >> they are disturbing and graphic. in many ways they are a revictimization of the petit family. >> reporter: dr. petit is aware. diary and what it says. a key piece of evidence in the case. komisarjevsky not only admitting he was there but what he did inside even taking a shot at petit himself. had mr. petit fought back in the very beginning, i would have been forced to retreat. when a criminal enters your home, you better have a prearranged plan to fight back. >> what's going to be the battle in this case and always the battle is whether or not he's going to get an order of execution. >> reporter: in that diary, joshua komisarjevsky went on to say and i'm quoting here "i'm a criminal with a criminal's mind.
7:40 am
my anticipated death sentence will be a state sanctioned murder of mercy." komisarjevsky has plead not guilty in this case but already offered to plead guilty if prosecutors will take the death penalty off the table. so far prosecutors have said no deal. they are pushing for death here. >> jeff rossen in new haven this morning. thank you. tara knight is a criminal prosecutor from new haven. good morning. when you think about dr. petit sitting through another horrific trial, i know a lot of people at home say why not try the two defendants together at the same time? >> it's a good question. the problem is the defendants are each blaming each other for the escalation in the violence in the case. they have a thing called an tag niftic defenses. when they blame each other, this he have to be tried separately. >> so much publicity surrounding this. steven hayes was tried and convicted and sentenced to death last year. how hard will it be to get a jury in new haven who hasn't
7:41 am
heard about the case? >> it's going to be almost impossible to find a juror who hasn't heard about the case. that's not the standard. what they're going to question jurors about is whether or not they can follow the judge's instructions. the judge will say to the jurors, listen, we know you heard about the case but can you follow what i tell you about the law and put any preconceived notions aside? >> jeff rossen mentioned the defense wants to cut a deal. they want to plead guilty in exchange for not getting the death penalty. prosecutors are seeking the death penalty. could the judge come in and grant that plea deal to the defense or do prosecutors have to agree? >> it's interesting. i don't think the judge can but the judge has not ruled on that motion yet. the defendant has asked let me plead guilty but the prosecution does have a right to pursue the death penalty. komisarjevsky can plead guilty but that doesn't take the death penalty off the table. he can't dictate what his punishment is going to be. >> all right. we know jury selection is expected to last months so we'll
7:42 am
be following it. thank you. >> thanks, savannah. >> coming up next on a much different note, prince william's visit to the quake zone and meredith vieira has an inside look at preparations for the royal wedding coming up right after this.
7:43 am
7:44 am
7:45 am
back at 7:45. meredith made her way to london this morning. she's outside westminister abbey where the royal wedding between prince william and kate middleton will take place in less than 43 days. meredith, good morning again. >> reporter: good morning again to you, matt. we're going to tell you why we're here but it's known as church of the kings. first, wouldn't you know i get to london and prince william leaves. we go to christchurch, new zealand, for more on his trip there. >> reporter: good morning. in what is likely to be prince william's final overseas trip before his upcoming april wedding to kate middleton, he
7:46 am
arrived in christchurch, new zealand today. the prince's visit was a welcome relief for the people here who are struggling to recover from last month's devastating earthquake. prince william's first stop in cy christchurch, the center here. the prince knows first hand the stress and pressure these workers face. christchurch's mayor says the nic for a beleaguered city.l a somber prince william took a trip through the red zone. this city's ground zero. >> it's unbelievable. >> reporter: 166 people are known to have died in the quake on february 22nd but the number
7:47 am
is expected to rise. in a separate meeting with families of victims from a mining disaster, there was an emotional moment as the prince was reminded of his own loss. >> we know that you also have had tragic times in your past with your mom, princess diana. >> reporter: prince william did not bring fiance kate middleton on this trip, the wedding was on the minds of many here. >> she was born in england. she thinks she's a princess. excited to see a live prince. >> reporter: the prince's decision to come to new zealand six weeks before his own big day makes this visit especially welcome. >> instead of having a stag party, he's come down here to christchurch. >> reporter: what's more, when prince william weds kate middleton on the 29th of april, the couple suggested in lieu of gifts, guests can donate to
7:48 am
specially chosen charities including the christchurch relief effort. >> it's a great morale booster here for us in christchurch because we've been through a lot of tough things. >> reporter: but on this day, perhaps the greatest gift was the presence of a prince. and tomorrow prince william will represent his grandmother, queen elizabeth ii, at a memorial service to remember the victims who died in the earthquake and that service will take place at a lovely park here in christchurch just a short distance from where i'm standing. back to you. >> thank you so much. we'll have much more on prince william's trip to new zealand tomorrow on "today." back to you. >> you said you took a tour of the abbey and you were given that tour by the dean of the abab abey and that's the person who will conduct the ceremony, is that right? >> reporter: that's right. he'll lead kathryn and her
7:49 am
father into the church. it takes four minutes to get from the entrance to the ougalt. he said i was talking too fast. on both sides the people will look at when she enters will be a lot of guests there. they won't be able to see the wedding. it's blocked from view from them. monitors up. as she passes underneath where the organ is where the choir will be on either side of her and by the time she gets up to the alter, royal family to the right and her family to the left. the dean has been dean here since 2006. this is his first royal wedding. the last one 25 years ago. i asked him if he was nervous, he said he's doing okay. has advice for the royal couple as well. we'll tell you what he said to them tomorrow. matt, back to you. >> good tease. way to go. we'll see you in a little while. we're back on a thursday morning right after this.
7:50 am
7:51 am
7:52 am
7:53 am
>> it's like that commercial. wait there's more. meredith has more from london. >> i wanted to show you your shot glass. i'm going to test it out for you tonight just to make sure there's no cracks or anything. >> i have a feeling. don't have too many and then drop it. thanks. we'll see you in a little while. >> straight to ebay i have a feeling. four women conned by the same boyfriend and they confront him on camera. we'll have their story. an exclusive live interview after your local news.
7:54 am
7:55 am
7:56 am
>> live, local, latebreaking. this is wbal-tv 11 news today in baltimore. >> good morning. i am stan stovall. time for a check on the morning commute with sarah caldwell and traffic pulse 11. >> tracking eight few problems out there, but thankfully volume is a bit lighter. allegheny ave, dealing with a vehicle fire there in the towson region. southbound in the city, exeter street, watch for an accident. delays on southbound j.f.x. approaching cold spring to its 28. we have this accident at henryton road in the
7:57 am
marriottsville region. delays not as bad on the west side. we are still seeing delays out of southbound 95 on the northeast. here is a like a drive times. 15 minutes on the outer loop north east side. this is a quick live look outside. here is what it looks like on the west side outer loop with liberty. it lot less volume, as i said. closures in effect along o'donnell due to the st. patrick's day parade. perhaps that is what everybody is. over to you, sandra. >> at the st. patrick's day to you, sarah. temperatures in the 40's, mid- to-low 40's on the eastern shore. headed for a high well above normal, 54. between 62 and 66 degrees today. more of the same tomorrow. we will surge to the mid-70's for the day, i. over the weekend, upper 50's.
7:58 am
spring officially begins on sunday. >> be sure to check the bottom of your screen for updated news and traffic information. we're back with another live update at 8:25.
7:59 am
coffee -- black, straight up. extra cream, three sugars. iced coffee french vanilla. for me. iced coffee with a turbo shot. i'm drinkin' dunkin'. i'm drinkin' dunkin'. i'm drinkin' dunkin'. drinkin' dunkin'. america runs on dunk.
8:00 am
>> 8:00 on a thursday morning. it's the 17th day of march, 2011. that makes it st. patrick's day. yes, that's the fountain. i believe that's on the south lawn of the white house and they have dyed that baby green in honor of the occasion. the president himself out there with food coloring this morning. probably not. out on the plaza, take a look at the size of the crowd we have gathered here in rockefeller plaza. lots of green. lots of smiles. lots of people headed to the parade in just a little while.
8:01 am
i'm matt lauer along with savannah guthrie who is here while meredith is on assignment in london. all right. coming up we'll talk about saving money on clothing. we have america's cheapest family back. they were given a task of coming up with two outfits for 50 bucks. we'll find out how they did. four women all dated the same man and were conned by him. they took matters into their own hands and they filmed the confrontation with them ahim an are here live. as you head into your 40s, 50s and 60s, is there anything you can do to stop your vision from deteriorating? you have glasses. i've been wearing them since first grade. dr. nancy snyderman will be here if your eyesight isn't what it used to be.
8:02 am
>> a lot to get to. natalie is standing by at the news desk. >> good morning, everyone. helicopters are dropping water on damaged nauclear reactors in japan as an attempt to cool them and limit the release of radiation. u.s. officials warn the situation is more desperate than japanese officials are acknowledging. more than 450,000 people in japan are living in schools and other shelters nearly one week after the magnitude 9.0 earthquake and tsunami. the state department will start air lifting american civilians and families of government personnel who want to leave japan. the u.s. urged americans to stay at least 50 miles from the stricken nuclear plant. authorities in bahrain detained six prominent opposition leaders today as part of their crackdown on anti-government demonstrators. president obama called bahrain's king on wednesday to express concern over the deadly violence used against peaceful
8:03 am
demonstrators. the top u.s. commander in afghanistan, general petraeus said his son committed a combat tour in afghanistan. the pullback starting in july will include combat troops. first of its kind study offering new hope in the treatment of parkinson's disease. half of the patients who received experimental gene therapy showed improvement within six months. a picky eater may go for veggies grown by michelle obama and her third annual garden. 2,000 pounds of produce. schoolchildren joined the first lady on wednesday to plant spinach, broccoli and beets which the president admits he doesn't really care for too much. it's 8:03. let's go out to al for a check of the weather. >> roasted beets are the best. love those.
8:04 am
they're not green. we have a lot of green today. where are you from? >> st. louis, missouri. >> let's check your weather and see what's going on for the day. pick city, columbus, ohio. sunny and mild. a high of 66. my brother-in-law lives there. let's check your afternoon temperatures. we have 40s in the northeast. toasty through the south. 90 on into texas with record highs today. more heavy rain in the pacific northwest. showers along the great lakes and frontal system will move through. sunny skies up and down the east coast no big airport delays. that's what's going on aroun >> plenty of sunshine today, high in the mid-60's. we are only going to be milder still as we go into tomorrow. 75
8:05 am
when we come back, four women conned by the same boyfriend confront him together on camera. they'll share their story right after this. i mean they're rewards, right? right? right. with the bankamericard cash rewards™ credit card... i get 1% cash back on every purchase. 1% cash back on groceries. highlights. frog leg green. 1% cash back on... whatever that is? and there is no limit to the amount of cash back you can earn. no expiration on rewards.
8:06 am
no hoops to jump through. -simple. -i love this card. looove it. [ male announcer ] the refreshingly simple bankamericard cash rewards credit card. apply online or at a bank of america near you. it's your fault. naturally blame the mucus. [ mucus ] try new advil congestion relief. it treats the real problem. reducing swelling due to nasal inflammation. new advil congestion relief. reducing swelling due to nasal inflammation. toilet paper has to get you clean. period. it's not just about, you know... but it also has to keep your hands clean. toilet paper has to help keep me clean... while getting me clean. quilted northern soft & strong. now 50% stronger for a confident clean.
8:07 am
don't suffer waiting for your pills to kick in. add alaway. for fast eye itch relief that works in minutes and lasts up to 12 hours. only alaway comes from bausch & lomb. for fast eye itch relief, add alaway. for fast eye itch relief, i wear what i love, because expression means everything. ♪ too hot to trot some say i'm one-of-a-kind. i say i'm so chico's. [ female announcer ] what makes a moment last? what makes even the lightest touch linger? new smooth sensation from nivea. the light lotion with the breakthrough skin care technology. 24-hour-plus hydra iq. it works with your skin's hydration system to keep skin smooth.
8:08 am
all day, all night. ♪ smooth sensation and the essentials collection. now with hydra iq. only from nivea. touch and be touched. inside the 2011 dodge journey is an 8.4-inch touch screen that lets you control the stereo volume, radio tuning, climate controls, turn-by-turn navigation, and bluetooth activation -- technology inside technology controlling more technology. welcome to the future. now lease the new 2011 dodge journey mainstreet for $299 a month for well-qualified lessees. ♪ [ female announcer ] why use the same hand towel over and over instead of a clean, fresh one every time? ♪
8:09 am
your hands are only as clean as the towel used to dry them. that's why there's kleenex® brand hand towels. a clean, fresh towel every time. back now at 8:09. painful enough to learn you were being conned by a boyfriend. what would you do if you learned he had done the same thing to three other women? that's what happened to this group. they decided to take matters into their own hands. we'll talk to them exclusively
8:10 am
in just a moment. first, with the back story, nbc's kevin tibbles. >> reporter: he said he was in love. >> very, very charming man. >> reporter: over and over. >> very gentle. charming. >> reporter: the problem is he was saying it to several different women. >> he just represented a very kind of exciting life. exciting possibilities for me. >> reporter: with each one a different story. >> we were going to get married. he talked extensively. >> reporter: it was it turns out a web of deceit. all spun by 44-year-old englishman simon reid after four years of masquerading as everything was caught and exposed by the very women whose hearts he broke. >> i don't know what the truth is anymore now to be honest. >> reporter: first of the four a woman from minnesota who met him
8:11 am
online. >> i think lying just comes natural to him. he was able to spin all of these stories. >> reporter: stories like being the father of a fighter pilot injured in afghanistan. that's what laura says he told her in england. >> i was flabbergasted by what he said about his son being involved in a helicopter crash. >> reporter: reid hit her up for money. a lot of money. about $27,000. >> it was after we had been together about four months. suddenly within a week give him my credit card on the basis that we were an item. >> reporter: reid lived for a time in this cabin on her property in england. it was another woman that started to connect the dots. >> i did get a bit suspicious. >> reporter: she did research and found a blog from one of reid's other girlfriends warning
8:12 am
of his deceit. she tracked down the other women and they hatched a plan. the plan was to lure him to a home, catch him red-handed and film it all. >> i know it's wrong when i'm doing it. i just don't seem to stop myself. it's not something that i think of when i'm lying. it's really not. >> i can never trust anyone again. >> i don't go into it to con people. >> reporter: after grilling him for several minutes, the jig was up. >> i'm going to call the police now. >> yes. >> you're going to admit to scheming us. >> reporter: simon reid trapped and confessing to it all. he's behind bars serving time for two counts of fraud.
8:13 am
the judge called his offense despicable. for these women, a sense of justice. >> all four women are with us exclusively. good morning to all of you. before we talk to you, i want to mention we did reach out to simon reid's lawyer who said that simon has cooperated in full with the police and pled guilty. he says he's also has a sense of remorse and believes his sentencing is justice. what did he tell each of you his job was? >> independent contractor. >> international businessman. >> drug and alcohol counselor. >> a professional indoor speed climber. >> do you feel like he tailored his story to what he thought you would want to hear? >> he would spend so long talking to you when you got together. you would have these really long conversations.
8:14 am
i think he was trying to work out what kind of guy you were looking for and what you were interested in and he would tailor himself to become that man. >> this started with you in 2008. he was talking about getting married and then you found out what? >> i found out he had a wife already so he couldn't marry me. >> you decided to write a blog. >> i did. i already had my blog going since 2003, but i wrote a scathing post about him. used his real name. used his photo. i said watch out for this guy. >> meanwhile he moves back to the u.k. you start dating him. he told you an incredibly sad story about his father being on life support. and then what did you find out? >> he cried on my shoulder initially and told me that he had to switch his dad off life support and then after that he told me his mom had tried to
8:15 am
commit suicide. she was in a local mental hospital. >> one day you called looking for him and found out -- >> he was with his other girlfriend. >> his father was alive? >> he certainly was. he said do you want to speak to his dad? >> another sad story for you that his son was in the royal air force and had lost both legs in afghanistan. >> yes. both legs and an arm in afghanistan. how can you reject someone when they tell you that? it just brings out all of your nurturing instincts. his son never had any accidents. >> you got on this pretty fast and you actually kind of pulled this group together. what was your experience with him? >> he told me variations. his father was dying and died a few weeks after we started dating. his son was in afghanistan.
8:16 am
no limbs removed. slightly different variations of the same thing. >> whose idea was it to confront him on video? that tape is priceless. was that your idea? >> yes. i have a friend who is an ex-journalist and asked him to record it all because he would keep it factual and businesslike. >> what did you think of his reaction? you are standing before him. it's all of you. you say it lasted four hours. that may be punishment enough. some of you said you felt sorry for him in the end. did you? >> yes. he was a liar 24 hours before the confrontation so i was still in a relationship with him. i still loved him at that point. i felt really guilty for calling the police on him afterwards. >> i was going to say, you loaned him $27,000. he's now in jail. how do you feel about that? does that feel just to you or
8:17 am
does it feel harsh? >> i feel vindicated. >> all right. ladies, a lot of people can relate to what happened and he sounds like a real jerk. thank you for being with us. appreciate it. we'll be back right after these messages. about saving for retirement and all my investments, but it's not something that i want to do completely on my own -- i like to discuss my ideas with someone. that's what i like about fidelity. they talked with me one on one, so we could come up with a plan that's right for me, and they worked with me to help me stay on track -- or sometimes, help me get on an even better one. woman: there you go, brian. thanks, guys. man: see ya. fidelity investments. turn here.
8:18 am
[ male announcer ] every day thousands of people are switching from tylenol to advil. take action. take advil. save on advil with our special coupon in select newspapers on march 27th. save on advil with our special coupon so, i woke up really early on a saturday morning at about 5 am. i got on my bike and rode 80 miles to the chobani factory just so that i could see where my favorite yogurt is made. and i got lost a few times. sure, go up the road, make a big right at the tree there. it's down there. no, it's a left. hey, those are some fancy pants. ha. i finally made it to the chobani factory. this is awesome. it was totally awesome. that's what we do for love, people. chobani. rich and creamy yogurt, with only natural ingredients. share your story at your advertising mail campaign is paying off! business is good! it must be if you're doing all that overnight shipping. that must cost a fortune. it sure does. well, if it doesn't have to get there overnight, you can save a lot with priority mail flat rate envelopes. one flat rate to any state, just $4.95. that's cool and all... but it ain't my money.
8:19 am
i seriously do not care... so, you don't care what anyone says, you want to save this company money! that's exactly what i was saying. hmmm... priority mail flat rate envelopes, just $4.95 only from the postal service. a simpler way to ship. that's why there's lubriderm® daily moisture. it contains the same nutrients naturally found in healthy skin. skin absorbs it better and it lasts for 24 hours. later gator. lubriderm. your moisture matched. those of us who know grass doesn't turn green just because the calendar says to. and that a big difference can grow from a small budget. for those of us with grass on our sneakers... dirt on our jeans... and a lawn that's as healthy as our savings...
8:20 am
the days are about to get a whole lot greener. ♪ more saving. more doing. that's the power of the home depot. we're lowering the cost of flexing our green thumbs. this mulch is just $4.97. we're lowering the cost of flexing our green thumbs. i wear what i love, because expression means everything. ♪ too hot to trot some say i'm one-of-a-kind. i say i'm so chico's. [bell tolls] - to best serve your customers, you have to know them. personally. only a local agent can do that. [click, motor hums] - doug pierce. lives in tornado alley. - hobby? - collects stamps. - excellent. - annette thompson. small business owner. hates cantaloupe. - good. - the lee family: twins.
8:21 am
with another on the way. - mazel tov. - that's meatloaf. - hmm. [click] that's still meatloaf. - very good. moving on. - we are insurance. - ♪ we are farmers ♪ bum di bum bum bum bum bum ♪ this morning on today's consumer, we're talking about dressing for success. if you think used clothing is not for your family, you may want to rethink that when you see how the cheapest family in america dresses. we gave them a little bit of a clothing challenge. for this family, it's a sport. >> we're proud to be known as the cheapest family. we get our clothing for pennies. >> when it comes to clothing, steve and annette never play
8:22 am
retail. >> i have a closet full of designer brand name clothes in perfect condition. 90% came from thrift stores. no one would ever know. >> the entire family is onboard. >> we have five kids. >> our sons and daughters look like a million bucks. >> no one would know that all their clothes are used. even 35 for a gown is a great price. >> we gave them a challenge. for $50 a piece, find a snazzy formal outfit and a nice spring casual one. >> 50 bucks for two outfits, that's a piece of cake. >> steve didn't make the cut but for $52.46 he still pleased with his two outfits. abby got a steal. 15.25 in total. >> this is not my color. >> annette trumped her. 14.50 for her two outfits and
8:23 am
bargain becky won cashing out at 10.50. at full retail these outfits could have costed $1,200. but the economides got it for much less. >> we have you here with two of your children. nice to see you. i'm getting into these savings. are you happy with your looks? >> it looks great. >> it seems like you had a lot to choose from. i thought for this budget you would go into a store and have one choice. >> no. >> the stores we shop at you can get in and out faster than you can get outfits at the mall. we outfit ourselves in less than four hours. >> you live in an area where it is thrift shop heaven.
8:24 am
>> amazing. >> now we're looking at the price tags you are all wearing. you look like bad game show contestan contestants. did they fit off the rack or did you pay extra? >> even his tux did not need to be altered. >> that's right off the rack. >> right off the rack. >> let's talk stigma. a stigma in tough economic times people freak out about second-hand clothing. you are here to say that stigma is ridiculous. >> i think so. consignment stores require clothes to be washed, pressed, just ready to wear right off the racks. thrift stores when you get the clothes you do need to wash them when you get them home but you could never tell. you can't tell the difference. >> when we look at an out fit for $10, you check a lot of things. >> check seams and zippers and any wear areas.
8:25 am
hold them up to the light. you'll have moth holes. >> 90% of the clothing that your family wears is second-hand clothing. what do you decide to buy new? what are the items that you will not go second-hand on? >> the things that we get new would be lingerie, underwear, socks, and sometimes sneakers. we'll get sneakers. we don't pay retail for those. we have a store that we'll get last year's closeouts. it's a chain in our area. we'll get really nice brand sneakers. >> how do your friends feel about this? are they onboard with this? do they think it's strange? what? >> our closest friends live the same lifestyle that we live. what we do when we hang out, we go play sports. we hang out in our rooms. but our closest friends live the same lifestyle so maybe some other friends go to the mall but we don't. >> you actually lend out some of your gowns that you've gotten over the years? >> from being able to shop at
8:26 am
consignment stores i have collected gowns i've gotten a great deal on. if there's a prom or a dressup event and girls don't have a gown, i'll loan them one of my gowns and it's a great way to bless them. >> it's working for your family i'll tell you that. nice to have you all back. thanks very much. >> thank you for having us. >> live, local, latebreaking. this is wbal-tv 11 news today in baltimore. >> good morning. i am mindy basara. let's get a check on the morning commute with sarah caldwell. >> not too bad out there. we still have accidents to get to at rte. 30 and emory road. at upperco, a crash being cleared. also tracking this problem, another vehicle fire in towson at's avenue at allegheny ave. baugh -- leslie ave and
8:27 am
allegheny ave.. o'donnell street shut down for the st. patrick's day parade. delays on the north and west side, southbound 95 out of the white marsh area. j.f.x. billing up just a bit in the southbound direction towards it 28. pretty empty on the outer loop west side. inner loop even heavier. live view of traffic on white marsh, going away from us, southbound traffic bread just beyond this shot, you will slow down approaching the beltway. now we check in with john collins for a look at the forecast. >> we got plenty of sunshine, a few thin, wispy clouds. by the end of tomorrow, something might change their. code temperatures outside. not bad for an early morning. 83%, humidity. we have the best in is very
8:28 am
light, three miles per hour. 51 to start the day. chilly start maybe. not too bad. this evening, 58 and mostly clear. >> thanks for joining us. another update at 8:55.
8:29 am
hey, what are you drinkin'? dunkin' iced. the biggest iced coffee i can get. iced coffee helps me keep up. i love iced coffee. drinkin' dunkin'. i'm drinkin' dunkin'. drinkin' dunkin'. dunkin'... iced coffee. i run on dunkin' iced coffee. america runs on dunkin' coffee.
8:30 am
8:30 on a thursday morning, march 17th, 2011. st. patrick's day. big parade in new york kicking off in just a little while. i'm matt lauer along with savannah guthrie.
8:31 am
natalie morales and al roker. in this half hour, you can't have a holiday like this without doing good eating. >> traditional irish breakfast looks so good. sweet stone potato cakes. green beer optional. >> that should be great. looking forward to that. as you get older, is it impossible to avoid the eye problems that creates the telescoping arm. we'll talk about that with dr. nancy snyderman. most common things that happen to your eyes and possible ways to prevent it. and a much talked about documentary "waiting for superman" and we catch up with her to find out what she's doing now. how to find the right doctor for your family. >> a lot to get to. you have a weather forecast.
8:32 am
>> kicking off the parade later here today. mild through southern tiers of state. sunshine through the great lakes. sunday, sunday, we're looking at a lot more heavy rain moving into california. could be flooding. mountain snows. rain in the upper mississippi river valley. sunny and cool in the northeast. mild in the gulf coast. >> we are in store for plan of sunshine for a st. patrick's day. light winds, well above normal. same deal in ocean city. plenty of
8:33 am
>> if you want to see if your irish eyes will smile about the forecast, go to the weather channel on cable or online. when we come back, a woman who is making it her mission to save america's schools. first, this is today on nbc.
8:34 am
8:35 am
>> this morning on "education nation today" saving america's schools. michelle reed captured headlines as she made sweeping changes in washington, d.c. and enemies along the way. she lost her job but not her passion for education reform. today contributing correspondent jenna bush hager, a teacher herself, caught up with michelle recently. good morning. >> that's right. she's truly a maverick in education reform. she's controversial and a courageous change maker. and these days as budget cuts mean teacher layoffs, ree is
8:36 am
leading the fight for a quality education for every child. michelle ree may have lost her job but she gained a mission. she continues her passion to fix america's schools with a new lobbyist group. >> we're working with rick scott in florida, chris christie in new jersey, governor kasich in ohio. >> ree launched a campaign called save great teachers. >> because of you i'll be back tomorrow. >> she's working with states to end a hot button issue policy of laying off teachers last in first out. >> whether or not you bring value to a kid or not makes absolutely no difference. all that mat certificates how long you've been in the system. >> ree hopes to change that. once a teacher herself, she was appointed the youngest chancellor of d.c. schools.
8:37 am
out of the gate she united a firestorm of controversy. she ended tenure, closed 23 schools, fired more than 200 teachers and two-thirds of d.c.'s principals. >> you fired even the principal of your little girl's school. >> that's right. >> was that a hard decision? >> it was a hard decision because my daughter came back from school that day and said the kids were upset and they were asking me why did your mom fire the principal? i said to my daughter, i said do you think your principal is a great principal? she said she's okay. i said don't you think that you and other kids deserve better than okay. don't you think you deserve the best? she said, yes, i do. >> reforms are part of a recent documentary "waiting for superman." her firebrand approach created
8:38 am
criticism and protests in washington. while you were chancellor, the union protested you calling you hatchet lady, how did you keep a thick skin during that? >> what was going through my mind was, you can call me whatever names you want. you can yell at me as loud as you want to. under my watch, i won't continue to allow the absolute dysfunction. >> her revolutionary work may have cost her her job last november when her boss, d.c. mayor adrian fenty, lost his bid for re-election. >> it didn't make me lose faith in the system. it made we want to double my efforts. >> here in d.c., what do you think it takes to bridge the education gap? >> having high quality teachers is one. we think that having choices for families is another piece because we don't ever want any
8:39 am
family to be trapped in a failing school. >> rhee is making education reform a family affair of her own. she's engaged to another education activist. they've been called the education celebrity couple. >> one of the most outspoken mayors in the country on education reform. we can come home and talk to one another about something that we both care about a lot. it is kind of great. >> rhee says she'll join forces for change and she's calling on every american to fight with them to save our nation's schools. >> we're at a moment in time right now that i never have seen in my entire career that there is more focus on education. i think a lot of people are saying, you know what? the education system in our country isn't working right now and we need to do something drastic to fix it. >> rhee has ambitious goals.
8:40 am
in the first week she opened students first and raised $1 million. she hopes to attract a million members and raise a billion dollars. savannah? >> she's passionate. jenna bush hager, great to see you. up next, your ageing eyes. what to do when your eyesight
8:41 am
oh wow, look at that. [ shrek ] calm down donkey. it's vacation time! ohhhhh, who says ogres can't surf? nice moves fiona! ha, ha, ha, i love 3d. wooo hooooo! [ shrek ] gingy! [ laughs ] hey do the roar. roooooar! yeah! marty, what's shrek doing on a cruise ship? looks like he's having fun!
8:42 am
[ female announcer ] join the dreamworks experience for the ultimate vacation, only on royal caribbean. this morning on "today's health." your ageing eyes. vision loss is one of the most common issues that people deal with as they get a little bit older. nbc's chief medical editor dr. nancy snyderman is here to explain why. >> should i put my glasses on? it would be you and me. people that are older. >> this happened to me like an alarm went off at 45. >> i grew up with glasses because i was near sighted and
8:43 am
then when i was 40 suddenly my eyes changed and now frankly -- fashionable bifocals. >> is that the magic age for people around 40? >> that's when the eye starts to change. if you look at your eye you have your cornea on the outside and then your lens. the lens is just like a joint and every other muscle tissue. it gets stiffer and as it gets stiffer, you can't as a human being take those images that come into your eyes and focus them on the back part of the eyeball near the retina and it is that lens and the fact that it is just not as squishy that changes around the age of 40. that's what gives us the ageing eye. >> let's talk about some of the common conditions that we should refer to. >> a medical term for the ageing eye. it's what you and i are talking about.
8:44 am
>> glaucoma you hear about often that surfaces around 40 or older. >> when we get our eyes checked, the doctors put in that numbing medicine and they touch the eyeball and it's to check on the pressure. there is fluid in your eyeball and normally the eye makes fluid and the fluid is released. when that fluid is blocked from leaving the eye, it cause pressure on the eyeball and causes pressure on the nerve in your brain which can cause you to lose vision. >> is there pain attached to it? >> blurry vision and simple treatments are eye drops. in some cases surgery may be needed. >> i read often times people with gralaucoma goes undetected. >> 50% of patients don't realize they have it. unless you see a doctor who tests for those pressure
8:45 am
readings and monitors them over the years, you may not know that you have it. >> what about cataracts? >> they don't go away. they can stabilize. this is one i want people to pay attention to. this is why you want to invest in a good pair of sunglasses and wear them on cloudy days. it's that light over the years that causes the lens to get cloudy. if you talk to people in their 70s or 80s, they'll talk about a decrease in vision that's like looking through a dirty windshield of a car. it's gradual. easy surgical fix. now it's simple outpatient procedure. and my father had two of them. my mother scanned for them. it comes with age but technology is extraordinary and easy surgical procedure. >> how about macular degeneration? >> this is the one you don't want. this is the one where you get a loss of central vision. imagine you and i looking at each other and i can see
8:46 am
everything around you but i can't see your face. frustrating for people that want to read. it's also one that when doctors sign that bright light in your eyes, they look at the back part of your eye. if there's a problem there doctors know and sometimes with medication or surgery they can take care of that. >> are we victims of invisible genetic clock or things we can do? diets that we can take on or vitamins? >> this is one of those things where lifestyle plays a difference. smoking hurts the blood vessels to your eyes. diabetes is one of the leading cause of blindness right now and overt-the-counter medication an just eating carrots. a good diet keeping blood pressure down and warding off diabetes means your eyes will be healthier. >> in 15 seconds left, misconception or truth, hurts your eyes texting using things like ipads.
8:47 am
>> strain your eyes but doesn't hurt vision. >> driving at night? >> no. >> reading in dim light? >> no. you may have a headache but it won't hurt your eyes. a special irish breakfast to help us
8:48 am
back now at 8:48. this morning we're celebrating
8:49 am
st. patrick's day with a traditional irish breakfast. the makings of a delicious feet that will make irish eyes smile. your book is "italian kitchen" but you are irish and we're doing the irish breakfast this morning. what's the one must have to make it a true irish breakfast? >> smoked salmon, farm eggs, irish bacon, cheeses -- >> okay. the list goes on. we're making potato cakes. >> these are easy to make. you need mashed potato. >> any potato will do? >> a good mashed potato. we have a bit of mustard that goes in. >> you used only egg yokes.
8:50 am
>> you don't want more liquid in it. and we'll put in some of this that goes in like so. you get a nice mix. this turns into a dough like this. >> do you worry about how much air you get in as you mix it? >> never overmix potatoes. then we need mixture here to make up. we need lemon juice and lemon zest and chives go in there. here we have a potato cake. these can be served with main course for dinner or they are fantastic with smoked salmon for breakfast with a bit of bacon. then they get fried up like so. >> how long do they go in there? >> it's great. if they are brown on the outside, we feel confident they are cooked all of the way
8:51 am
through? >> absolutely. the potato is cooked. >> while they are doing that, we work on the topping. >> what we have here are scones. the perfect sweet scones. i have sugar, plain flour, salt and butter in here. you make a well in the center. and in goes your milk. this is whole milk. goes in like so. >> have to do it with whole milk. >> absolutely. there is such a knack to making perfect stones. >> what's the trick? >> one hand mixing. >> why does it matter? >> if you knead that you will have stones and not scones. it's just coming into a dough now. nice and light. there we have it now. and then like so on a floured work surface like so. >> that's all the mixing you
8:52 am
need to do? >> the air is trapped in there. that's what you want. you give it a bit of wooshing around. it's not a culinary term. >> it's a technical term. >> what's this stuff here? >> egg. cut scones into circles or whatever shape you want. >> can you use that same circle over here? >> you can. you can cut with a knife if you wish. i already made some over there in triangles for you. >> i want to see the other stuff. let's just get right to meat. >> this is irish breakfast. if you stay in my bed and breakfast back home in ireland, this is what you get. jam with scones. >> potato cakes. you serve this with salmon? >> smoked salmon and horseradish cream or whatever you want. lemon cream or whatever you want with it. irish bacon with sausages and scrambled egg. >> what are these tomatoes?
8:53 am
>> these are just a bit of breadcrumbs and typical with an irish breakfast and mushrooms you may have as well and this is spotted dog. >> that's a whole other segment. what do you drink with this? >> tea. >> this looks delicious. happy st. patrick's day. >> let's check in with our good friend mr. willard scott. >> beautiful south seas island resort. hanging around here since i was 3. happy birthday from smucker's where the sun is shining right now. our birthday jar spins about a bit. l leo meyerson, turned his hobby ham operating radio into a
8:54 am
business. and longwood florida, paul troup 100 years old today. swims every day. 70 years of happy marriage. and a martini every night. how about that combination? virginia white, great state of new york. 100 years old. loves to see her sisters whenever she can. that's wonderful. all right. harold greve. 100 years old today. lives by himself. volunteers at the local food bank. happy, happy birthday, sir. also eugene carbone. loves to eat out all the time. especially breakfast. breakfast every single morning
8:55 am
with his friends and enjoys his breakfast. charlotte hirsh. holocaust survivor. how about that? she loves being with her family. all right. cecil boyd, scottsdale, arizona. 100 years old. loves to play golf. three holes in one in his life. i consider it an accomplishment if you come down to see me. love you. >> thank you, willard. he's been missing the smackdown here in the kitchen. al taking issue with savannah's cooking pro ining prowess. how do you know they are cooked through? they are pamashed potatoes. >> come cover the white house. see how you like that. >> so tough. chuck todd, i don't know what to do. >> i have to go. just ahead, money mistakes you
8:56 am
pass onto your kids. >> these are great. >> live, local, latebreaking. this is wbal-tv 11 news today in baltimore. >> good morning. i am mindy basara. baltimore mayor stephanie rawlings-blake response to get fixed concerns regarding city funding johns hopkins, where her husband is employed. the mayor says she has never voted on funding for a specific department of johns hopkins where her husband works as a coordinator. it relates to johns hopkins university, not johns hopkins medicine. back in a minute wit
8:57 am
8:58 am
>> live, local, latebreaking. this is wbal-tv 11 news today in baltimore. >> good morning. i am mindy basara. baltimore mayor stephanie rawlings-blake response to get fixed concerns regarding city funding johns hopkins, where her husband is employed. the mayor says she has never voted on funding for a specific department of johns hopkins where her husband works as a coordinator. it relates to johns hopkins university, not johns hopkins medicine. medicine.
8:59 am

NBC March 17, 2011 7:00am-9:00am EDT

News/Business. Amy Ryan. (2011) Spring shopping; profile of Michelle Rhee; actress Amy Ryan; colorful items. New. (CC) (Stereo)

TOPIC FREQUENCY U.s. 21, Us 17, Patrick 14, Savannah 10, Tokyo 10, Matt 9, William 8, America 8, Baltimore 7, Christchurch 7, Afghanistan 6, Latebreaking 5, Matt Lauer 5, Nbc 5, London 5, New Zealand 5, New York 4, Kate Middleton 4, Ha 4, United States 4
Network NBC
Duration 02:00:00
Scanned in Annapolis, MD, USA
Source Comcast Cable
Tuner Channel 78 (549 MHz)
Video Codec mpeg2video
Audio Cocec ac3
Pixel width 528
Pixel height 480

disc Borrow a DVD of this show
info Stream Only
Uploaded by
TV Archive
on 4/8/2012